When it comes to acing a job interview, preparation is key. Beyond showcasing your skills and experience, asking insightful questions demonstrates your genuine interest in the role and company.
A job interview is not just an opportunity for the employer to assess your suitability for a role; it’s also a chance for you to determine if the company aligns with your career goals and values. One effective way to showcase your interest and gain insights is by asking thoughtful questions.
In an interview, asking questions goes both ways. The interviewer and the interviewee should have questions to ask each other. When the interviewer goes first, remember he/she is looking for the best candidate for the job and has to scrutinise the interviewees thoroughly. Both have to prepare their questions before the interview.
One of the things you’ll be asked at the end of an interview is, ‘Do you have any questions for me?’ To stand a chance of securing the job, always say yes. Having a list of questions to ask an interviewer makes you look interested, enthusiastic and engaged, which are all the qualities the employer will be looking for. It also gives you one final chance to further highlight your relevant qualities and experience.
“However, the interview isn’t over yet, and you still want to demonstrate that you are the best person for the job,” says Lees. So, your goal is to continue to prove you’re a fit for the specific opportunity. Lees suggests saying something like, “I do have a few questions but before I ask, can I say one thing?” That will allow you to drive home any key message about your suitability for the job. In fact, before the interview, you should “decide, in advance, on two or three messages that you want to get across,” says Lees. And if you haven’t been able to convey those points in response to the questions you’ve been asked so far, you should do so at this stage.
We’ll explore seven engaging questions you should ask during a job interview to leave a lasting impression and increase your chances of landing that dream job.
Question 1: “Can you describe the typical career path for someone in this role?”
Asking about career progression not only shows your commitment to long-term growth within the company but also helps you visualise your potential journey within the organisation.
Question 2: “What qualities are you looking for in an ideal candidate?”
Demonstrate your eagerness to align your skills with the company’s expectations. This question also allows you to tailor your responses to emphasise the traits they value most.
Question 3: “How does the company foster professional development and learning?”
By inquiring about professional growth opportunities, you demonstrate your commitment to continuous improvement and highlight your interest in staying up-to-date in your field. Enquiring about development opportunities demonstrates to the interviewer that you’re serious about your career and committed to a future with the organisation. You don’t want to be stuck in a dead-end job, so if you’re unsure of the typical career path for someone in this role, asking this question will help you to assess whether a long-term career with the company is a possibility, or if you’d need to move on to gain further responsibility.
Question 4: “What are the most important upcoming projects or initiatives for the team?”
This question not only showcases your enthusiasm for the role but also highlights your desire to contribute meaningfully from day one, potentially setting you apart from other candidates. The key is to make this portion of the interview feel like a continuation of the conversation.
Question 5: “How does the company promote work-life balance for its employees?”
Showing concern for work-life balance signals that you are not only interested in excelling at your job but also maintaining your well-being—a quality many employers value.
Question 6: “Could you describe the company culture and team dynamics?”
Cultural fit is crucial for both the candidate and the company. By inquiring about culture, you demonstrate that you’re interested in being part of a cohesive team that shares your values.
Question 7: “What are the next steps in the interview process?”
Asking about the next steps shows your enthusiasm for progressing in the hiring process. It also allows you to prepare for potential follow-up interviews or assignments.
Asking engaging questions during a job interview goes beyond just impressing the interviewer; it helps you gain deeper insights into the company, the role and your potential colleagues. These seven questions are designed to showcase your enthusiasm, align your skills with the company’s needs and leave a memorable impression. Remember, preparation is your secret weapon to standing out and landing that coveted job. Good luck!
Researched by: Adejoke Toye